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Charity creates angel gowns for grieving families

Time: 2018-12-15 15:15cheongsam dress Click:

Old prom and wedding gowns that had been sitting unused in South Shore closets are being repurposed to help grieving families thanks to the work of a Pembroke woman.

Pat Marsters began working with local seamstresses last year to convert donated dresses into “angel gowns” that are given to families who have lost a baby. Her organization, called In Memory of Ambrose & Danielle Angel Gowns, has collected more than 80 gowns since September 2017 and worked with eight seamstresses to produce more than 100 burial gowns for babies.

“They just started pouring in,” said Marsters, who lost a baby daughter a week after she was born 41 years ago.

The project is named after Marsters baby girl, Danielle, and Dorchester resident Maggie Mancuso’s son Ambrose, who also died as a baby.

“I know how devastating it was for me a young mom, first child and not knowing what to do and I had none of that help around me,” Marsters said.

The two women were inspired after learning about programs around the world converting donated dresses into baby burial gowns. Some companies charge for the gowns, but Marsters and Mancuso wanted to give theirs away for free.

“How can you say to a family that’s grieving, ‘pay for this’?” Marsters said. “You have something in common and you can help each other.”

Each donated dress can be made into about five baby gowns, which are given to hospitals and funeral homes around Massachusetts and as far away as Florida. A box of gowns will be donated to South Shore Hospital inWeymouth on Saturday morning.

Marsters urged any family in need of a baby burial gown to contact her through her group’s Facebook page or by emailing her at treasuresofourhearts2@

“They’re not alone,” she said. “It’s one less thing that they have to worry about.”

Reach Amy McKeever at

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